It was just reported that sales of the recently released Apple’s iPhone 8 have been abysmal. Apple doesn’t release numbers, but analysts say that Apple has cut production by half, that workers at their factories in China are being laid off in droves, and more people are buying the older iPhone 7 than the 8. And AT&T said they had 900,000 fewer phone upgrades this season compared to last year. All this comes less than just one month after its introduction.
It really shouldn’t come as a surprise to anyone with a little common sense. I think I’m a perfect example of Apple’s problem. I’m often an early adopter and like to have the newest model. But I’ve been content to keep using my 3-year old iPhone 6. Why is that?
First, the 8 looks and works essentially the same as the 6 and the 7 after that. Improvements may make the iPhone 8 faster and take better pictures, but, really, the 6 does just fine. Apple did very little to differentiate the 7 from the 6 and the 8 from the 7; certainly nothing that makes a big different in one’s day to day usage. Now, if they increased battery life significantly, I’d feel different.
Second, by moving from a 6 to an 8, I lose my headphone jack, something I use nearly every day. There was no reason for Apple to remove it other than trying to force us to move to an inferior sounding Bluetooth. They called it courage to remove it; I call it stupid. And now Apple is paying the consequences for that decision. I suspect others like myself want to keep their headphone jack to use with the headphones we like. So why pay $800 and lose this desirable feature?
Third, Apple raised the price of the iPhone 8, making the 7 seem like a better buy. Does is seem like Apple keeps making the wrong decisions?
Some will say that everyone is waiting to buy the new iPhone X. But Apple will not be able to make enough of them to compensate for the loss if iPhone 8 sales.
Apple is in a pickle now, and it’s the consequences of making many bad decisions, and underestimating the intelligence of its customers.